One of the cool things about covering the NBA Draft compared to the NFL Draft is not dealing with the enormous amount of mock drafts. Main reason for that: their draft is directly one month after the order is set and not a few months (paging Roger Goodell). Anyways, with mocks coming out like hot cakes in the next few days and weeks, I compiled picks from writers I respect to see what they think the Milwaukee Bucks will do with the second pick. If you didn’t read my thoughts on their options, do so. Feel free to click on their name and affiliation to read the rest of their mock.
Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated:
Pick: Joel Embiid, C, Kansas
"If Wiggins is on the board, this becomes a tough decision. But the Bucks need another big man and an Embiid-Larry Sanders frontcourt has tremendous defensive promise. The question Milwaukee (and others) must answer: How bad is Embiid's back?"
Chad Ford of ESPN:
Pick: Joel Embiid, C, Kansas
"Some in the Bucks organization really liked Embiid before his back injury. But there are questions about whether they will actually be able to get him in for a physical before the draft. If they can, he is likely the No. 1 pick with Wiggins off the board. If they cannot, Parker or Dante Exum could move into this spot. Parker is the safe pick, but there are concerns that he plays the same position as Giannis Antetokounmpo. Exum could be their point guard of the future, as they would like to move Brandon Knight to the 2."
Kurt Helin of Pro Basketball Talk:
Pick: Jabari Parker, F, Duke
"Ideally, Joel Embiid will be given a clean bill of health, and I would put him in this slot. However, until that happens, Parker becomes Milwaukee’s best option at number 2. Parker will give them an instant boost in scoring, and the ability to play him inside or out should give the coaching staff plenty of lineup options."
Jason McIntyre of The Big Lead:
Pick: Jabari Parker, F, Duke
"It’s a wing league, the Bucks already have rim protectors in Henson and Sanders, Embiid’s back could be a question, his agent may not want his client on what is annually one of the worst teams … Parker starts from Day 1 and leads this team in scoring. In two years, when the Greek Freak is 21 and they add another lottery pick in 2015 … look out?"
Matt Moore, Zach Harper, and Gary Parrish of CBS Sports:
Moore: Joel Embiid, C, Kansas
Harper: Andrew Wiggins, SF, Kansas
Parrish: Joel Embiid, C, Kansas
Now that the Bucks have secured their draft spot for this upcoming June, it’s time to start looking at the possible selections they could make at second overall. Please, it’s going to be alright, this isn’t like the NFL when you’re force fed racks on racks of mocks. Besides, the draft is just next month, and that’ll get here shortly. So with that quick reminder and sigh of relief for many of you, here are the obvious three options and what I think of them:
Player: Jabari Parker
I don’t think many are taking this serious, but Parker’s character is what makes him the best player in this class and it’s not even close to me anymore. Did you read that Sports Illustrated piece he wrote? In the perfect world, if Wiggins heads to Cleveland (Wiggins and Manziel in the same state?) Parker has a solid chance of coming home to the Midwest (he’s a native of Chicago) and starting his career in Milwaukee. His scoring ability is already transferrable and right now, he can average roughly around 10-15 points per game. The Bucks need a scorer to go in their starting-five with Brandon Knight, but where would Parker fit with Giannis Antetokounmpo? I guess that’s the one question I have if he were selected. Still, factoring in the time, he has the chance to grow into the best player in the class on and off the court. I don’t want to compare him to Carmelo Anthony, but that’s who he reminds me and a lot of people of.
Player: Andrew Wiggins
Wiggins is in the debate alongside Duke’s Jabari Parker for the top selection and if you’d like to get saucy, Joel Embiid without the back concerns can be thrown in the fire, too. Fact is, his athleticism is straight-flexin-on-Instagram elite and he has the best upside in the class. Bringing in Wiggins would help diversify Milwaukee’s starting five, giving them a player who can honestly play at the first three starting spots. This specifically helps after we just witnessed all of the different lineup changes this past season. Spoiler: When my mock draft comes out, he’ll be the top pick.
Player: Joel Embiid
Embiid’s current stock is down compared to where it was around the beginning of the season due to a serious back injury. Back injuries are watched carefully and I’m sure John Hammond and his staff will find out as much as they can on it. He’ll go through different tests before the draft, but regardless, he still won’t be knocked out the top-10. He gets up the floor tremendously well for a seven-footer and can protect the rim. Pair that alongside an on-good-behavior Larry Sanders with John Henson and Giannis, and you have more length than Sidney Moncrief can handle saying in broadcasts. That group will have nicknames galore. Two other concerns with him that I have are regarding his inexperience playing the game itself, and ability to matchup up against grown men that have families to feed at the next level.
If the decision were up to me, as most of you probably could tell, my pick would be Jabari Parker. Milwaukee is in a great spot, though. Having the option of getting one of the three benefits them a lot. I wouldn’t touch Embiid because there aren’t many players historically who clear through back problems in the NBA.
Be on the lookout for my mock draft coming soon once I finish watching tape, and thank you to those who watched my NBA Draft lottery reaction video. It truly means a lot.
Mallory Edens had a lot to talk about with her friends at school this morning at the lunch table. Last night she represented the Milwaukee Bucks in New York City for the NBA Draft lottery and although the Bucks received the second overall pick, much of the focus shifted to the 18-year old who is set to graduate from high school next month. She even has a parody Twitter account now so she knows it’s real. Yes.
Everybody is writing about her stardom, but not many people are talking about what's going on in her mentions. So let’s take a look at some of the crazy and random things people had to say about Mallory today:
Fun fact: Mallory had a few hundred followers before last night’s game. At this current time, she has 41,817. Go ahead and add to this number by following her.
The Milwaukee Bucks were awarded the second overall pick in the upcoming 2014 NBA Draft. In downtown Milwaukee at Upper 90 Sports Pub, I hung out with fans to get their instant reactions. This was definitely one of the best experiences of my journalistic career so far.